Err, Brendan?

Brendan Barber, the TUC’s general secretary, said: “It is absurd to think that the private sector will create 2.5m new jobs over the next five years.”

Umm, you do know that the private sector creates at least that many each and every year, don\’t you?

On one estimate, one in seven private sector jobs was destroyed each year between 1997 and 2005.

If there\’s 24 million private sector jobs (close enough for a blog post) and 3.4 million are destroyed each year but unemployment doesn\’t rise then 3.4 million must be being created each year as well.

Now it\’s entirely possible that there won\’t be net private sector job creation: but that\’s not what you\’re saying, is it?

2 thoughts on “Err, Brendan?”

  1. Err, obviously that is what he is saying, even if he doesn’t spell it out. The straw man argument – you love it, don’t you

  2. Nick – wow, did you even follow the links?

    The context is a government report which reckons the private sector will create 2.5m jobs while destroying 1.2m jobs for a net change of 1.3m jobs.

    Mr. Barber is giving a reaction quote to this as an example of an “expert” casting doubt that the creation side of the ledger will actually occur.

    Ignoring for the moment the humour value in the TUC’s general secretary being an expert qualified to comment on Treasury papers, the obvious point here is that he is talking about GROSS job creation not, NET.

    He is saying, very clearly, that he thinks gross private sector job creation will not meet the Treasury’s forecast of 2.5m jobs.

    Whether the Treasury or Mr Berber is right about gross job creation I couldn’t say, of course…but no matter how hard you try, you can’t make this into a discussion of net job creation. The 2.5m is gross, not net.

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